A few weeks ago while photographing a beautiful waterfall, I was given a tip by a fellow photographer.

We began to talk about the great outdoors and mother nature. I personally love the forest and all the animals that live within – to me it helps you appreciate life more and more. The photographer suggested to travel to Kent, NY and visit an amazing serene place that is hidden in the local forest.

At first I was unaware of what he meant and was a bit skeptical but I decided to travel up North. But as we traveled beneath the forest and the empty roads of Kent, we saw it. It was a Buddhist monastery hidden from everyday society, the first one I’ve ever witnessed in New York.

I’ve never been to a monastery but have always been fascinated by them. My first knowledge of monasteries were from films and I always assumed that they are considered to be a place filled with peace and wisdom.

While walking into the forest and through the trees, I felt so present.

There was absolutely no outside noise, no honking cars or screaming conversations – just the sounds of the trees dancing in the breeze. The trip allowed me to block out any ongoing thoughts about the future or the past and to just focus on what I could control – the present moment.

(click on the photos below to see the gallery)

After I returned back to society, my thoughts came back to me in waves.

The monastery helped me see how incredible busy we can be.

We are so focused on so many things such as the likes on Instagram, Facebook posts and the television telling us how our world is in turmoil. There are so many triggers that can lead us to make dangerous choices because we cannot “afford” the time to just sit down and take a breathe.

If there us anything that I can show you is this: take some time and just be still.

Now it’s your turn: Sit down and ask yourself if YOU are okay. Once we take a moment to find ourselves, life becomes less stressful. What do you think about this hidden monastery? When was the last time you just stopped and enjoyed yourself?

Leave a comment below and let me know your thoughts! And if you like this post, share it with your friends, family, or on social media!

Til our next adventure,